Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Walrus on Chukchi Sea Shores with Skin Lesions

Detailed Description

Large numbers of walruses came ashore to rest near the community of Point Lay, Alaska when sea ice had dissipated from their offshore foraging grounds in the eastern Chukchi Sea during late August through October of 2011.  Walruses in these groups cycled between this coastal resting area and their foraging grounds, both near-shore and offshore.  USGS is tracking these walruses in an effort to understand the consequences of foraging from a coastal resting area relative to traditional behavior of foraging from offshore sea ice.  Depicted in these photos are walruses observed on the edge of these groups that exhibited skin lesions.  The lesions were distributed across the walruses bodies and were in various states of healing.   (Photo taken during USGS research efforts permitted under US Fish and Wildlife Service Permit No. MA801652-3.)


Public Domain.